“The most important thing when playing the character was to just get rid of a whole section of feelings that I have as a human being” – Owen Teale
Being a part of the massively popular fantasy show Game of Thrones is a major high-point in any actor’s career, and British actor Owen Teale — who played Ser Allister Thorne until [SPOILERS] his character’s recent on-screen death — found it a rewarding, but difficult, experience.
Portraying the grim Nights Watchman Thorne sounds like a grueling task, requiring him to dispense with certain feelings, according to Teale. He says, “In Thorne’s boots is not a nice place to be. I found the most important thing when playing the character was to just get rid of a whole section of feelings that I have as a human being — like joy, for instance, that’s just gone. Once I achieved that, in my mind, to look at Jon Snow, who has the world before him and talent and is this personable human being, to look at him while you’re feeling joyless, then Snow presses all the wrong buttons — that really helped to be able to react to him as a character and not as me.”
But Thorne wasn’t always this way, according to Teale, “He wasn’t a very fully fleshed character to begin with, and I take it as a great gift that [showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss] have given me these bits and invested in the character.”
Teale further explained that he would have preferred the writers expand on Ser Allister Thorne after he killed Jon Snow in the finale of the previous season. “I thought that I’m loving this because they’re pushing my character — something is happening, we’re not going to repeat and fade. I thought they’re either going to really invest in Thorne and he’s going to take over Castle Black, or it will mean his end — and I liked either of those options. I guess I would prefer they explore his character with Jon Snow gone, but it’s not as interesting as what they’ve chosen. They give him a death and a speech.”
Teale also spoke about the difficulties he had on his last day on the set. “I guarded myself not to get too emotional. I had done the end scene, the hanging; then we had the rock slide, so there was quite a [delay between filming Thorne’s death and finishing the other scenes]. You try to be professional about it, but inside I realized it was the end of a very important chapter in my career, and probably the biggest thing I’ll ever work on.”
Written by Randy Johnson